SHAH ALAM: The pollution incident in Sungai Selangor which caused several water treatment plants in the state to cease operation was due to the dumping of industrial waste into the river.
Selangor Mentri Besar Azmin Ali however added that the Selangor Water Management Authority (Luas) and Selangor Department of Environment (JAS) were still investigating the actual cause of the incident.
“The pollution in the river was due to spillage of hydrocarbon which affected supply of clean water to almost 60% of the consumers in the state, involving nearly 800,000 customer accounts.
“The state government regrets the recurrence of such an incident following the diesel pollution incident at Sungai Gong in August last year whereby, the state government seized the land in question and took legal action against the culprits,” he said.
Speaking at a media conference after chairing an emergency meeting on the incident at the State Secretariat Building here Sunday evening, he said water was expected to be fully restored in three days.
Azmin added that the state government had directed Syarikat Bekalan Air Selangor Sdn Bhd (Syabas) to raise production and distribution of water immediately, including stationing static tanks at several affected areas and updating the company’s website, as well as expanding manpower at its customer service centre, Puspel.
“The National Water Services Commission (Span) will assist by obtaining additional lorry tankers from nearby states and the Armed Forces.
“The operator of SSP1 (Sungai Selangor Phase 1), Splash (Syarikat Pengeluar Air Sungai Selangor Sdn Bhd) has been told to raise production from 950 million litres to 1,045,000 litres daily, with immediate effect as a mitigation measure, he added.
He said the priority of the emergency water supply assistance would be given to critical consumers such as hospitals, dialysis centres and welfare homes, as well as for urgent situations such as weddings or funerals.
Commenting further on the incident, Azmin said the operators of several water treatment plants had stopped operation at 8pm Saturday to prevent polluted substances from entering the treatment system resulting in the disruption of water supply.
He said all water treatment plant operators involved had started pumping raw water at 5am Sunday.
“Syabas said water supply in several affected areas will be restored from 8am tomorrow. Nonetheless, certain locations, especially those on higher ground and at the end of the distribution system such as Pulau Indah, Port Klang and Banting will receive supply in stages,” he added.
Azmin declined to comment when asked if the incident involved elements of sabotage but stressed the party responsible would not escape action.
He stressed that the incident would not result in water rationing in the state. – Bernama